Goodbye North America!
06.09.2009 - 09.09.2009 23 °C
With our Bumbershoot 2009 pamphlet and our passport on hand, we headed to Seattle with Pat (trusted driver) and Sarah. I was really excited about seeing Jason Mraz live and Mark was excited to add another state to his “repertoire”. During the road trip, the conversation turned into food and Sarah mentioned that she once had the best burrito at this fast food joint called Taco del Mar which neither Mark or I have ever tried. After crossing the US border, Sarah and I spotted a Lululemon outlet and forced the guys to stop for a quick browse and what do you know… there’s a Taco del Mar right there!! We just had to hop in for lunch; all three of them ordered the famous Mondo Burrito (Mission/San Francisco style) but I got intimidated by the huge mountain rice, beans, meat, sour cream, guacamole, salsa & cheese so I opted for the fish & steak tacos which were delicious.
We arrived in downtown Seattle and headed for the famous Public Market Center where we got to see fishes thrown from one end of the store to another, gigantic lobster that could feed a family of six, taste some chocolate pasta and, of course, have some coffee at the Original Starbucks. Notice how the gypsy on the original sign is bare-chested while the current, more appropriate one has her breasts covered by her hair. (Thanks to Pat for pointing it out, only a dude could have noticed it. Hehe).
We then headed for the Experience Music Project to see a Jimi Hendrix exhibition, learn about the history of every music genre, watch a live band perform, see Kurt Cobain’s slashed guitar as well as the late Michael Jackson’s diamond glove. The most fun though was the On Stage experience which we got to be rock stars for 3 minutes as the band “24 cups” (Mark came up with it inspiring himself from the 24 Stanley cups won by the Canadiens). With Sarah as bass and backup singer, Mark as keyboard and backup singer, Pat as lead singer and maracas, and myself as badass drummer, we rocked our heads out at the tune of Twist & Shout while the whole thing was recorded on DVD. Even if we were all a tad embarrassed of the final result, we agreeably had a blast doing it and yes, it will hit Facebook soon. Mark & I then decided to brave the wind and the rain and made our way to the top of the Space needle for a 360 degree view of the city, it was worth it.
It was getting dark and cold so we all decided to forget about the Bumbershoot concert and started roaming the city for a good Thai restaurant and we hit the jackpot. After about an hour of searching, we winded up in this authentic Thai spot and had the best Duck Curry EVER!! Mark & I can vouch for that since we’ve been to Thailand already. Exhausted out of our minds, we drove back to Vancouver with pretty satisfied stomachs.
We woke up the next day pretty tired but determined to make our way to the renowned Whistler for some amazing sightseeing. So the foursome got in the car for another road trip. It was 10:30 in the morning but Mark just had to have a White Spot (fast food chain in BC) burger before we hit the mountains. I had a taste of it and have to admit that it was pretty damn good and they had amazing fries too. The view during the drive was amazing and we also got to make a pit stop at the Shannon falls for some fantastic pictures. At Whistler, we had lunch at the apparently famous Splitz Burger (voted best burger in town for many many years), walked around the charming village, watch some dirt biker go down the mountain and also got to drool over the 20 something kinds of Candy apple at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. We decided not to take the lift up the mountain because, for one, it was pretty expensive (42$/person) but also because it was pretty overcast which meant that there was chances that we would end up seeing a whole lot of nothing up there. So instead, we opted to go to a store which sold pictures for what we could have seen from up there if it were a clear day. It was the second best option, but it was still good enough. On our drive back home Pat stopped the car at a few spot where we got to enjoy incredible views and Mark got to meet a new friend; a cute little seal. That night Mark had dinner with his longtime friend Joel and his new wife while I stayed home with Pat & Sarah and got introduced to their new addiction: True Blood. I have to admit I got hooked in the first 15 minutes.
Our last day in Vancouver was spent doing boring chores like laundry, cleaning up, banking... We said our goodbyes to Pat & Sarah and got picked up by Ed for some Hong Kongese lunch. We got to enjoy some down time at Ed’s place which gave me the opportunity the finish my first book of the trip. I’ve been reading “The Alchemist” which was suggested to me by my friend Costa and I loved it. It’s a book about following your dreams and your true self; I strongly recommend it! Mark lost his sunglasses; he bought them in Finland and loved them. We went for a Ray Ban model RB4108 search, but nothing. That night we ordered pizza (from Jim’s, very good!) and…. MARK SHAVED HIS HEAD!!! I’ve always known Mark with longish hair but we figured this would be a great time for him to find out if he’d look good bald. So after a bit of persuasion from my part (I’ve always had a weakness for shaved head)and a bit of his own curiosity, he gave in and did it! And the result is A+.
We got dropped off at the SkyTrain early the next morning, direction: TOKYO!!!
Next blog: the madness that is Tokyo.
Mark & Thanh